World Bulletin / News Desk
Najib Razak said Wednesday that Malaysia and Japan were “on the same page” regarding the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which was criticized by U.S. President-elect Donald Trump during election campaigning.
Kyodo news agency quoted Razak as saying, “we have passed the resolution in our parliament to participate in the TPP, and the way is clear for Malaysia to go ahead with the TPP and we hope that the TPP agreement will come into force."
Last week, the lower house of Japan’s parliament voted to ratify the TPP while deliberations are on-going in the upper house regarding related bills.
Razak described Abe’s scheduled meeting with Trump in New York on Thursday as “very much awaited by all TPP countries", expressing hope that the incoming U.S. administration would recognize the importance of the deal.
The U.S.-led agreement, which drew heavy criticism in Malaysia and other participating countries in response to sensitive chapters, was signed Feb. 4 in New Zealand by trade ministers from the 12 countries involved.
Member countries include the U.S., Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei – which represent more than 40 percent of the world’s gross domestic product.
The pact drew criticism from many quarters within and outside the 12 countries, due to law amendments needed in the respective countries to accommodate the standards stated in the pact.
These were particularly in the area of investor state dispute settlements, government procurement, the business potential of local small and medium enterprises and patents for biologics, which would determine prices of drugs after the TPP comes into force.